Canada a top country for "good quality jobs for youth" - EY report

Supporting entrepreneurship key to curbing youth unemployment

TORONTO, July 22, 2014 /CNW/ - According to a new EY report, Actions to avoid a lost generation, Canada is a top country for "good quality jobs for youth." But supporting entrepreneurship is key to realizing the potential of these jobs, the firm says.

"Fostering a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem is one of the best ways to deal with youth unemployment," says Colleen McMorrow, EY Partner and Canadian Strategic Growth Markets Leader. "Entrepreneur-led businesses are leading when it comes to job growth. In fact, according to EY's recent Global job creation survey, 76% of entrepreneurs plan to expand their workforces in 2014, compared to only 31% of executives at large corporations."

While Statistics Canada's most recent Labour Force Survey results show youth employment numbers are on the decline in this country, EY's report uses Canada as an example of a G20 country with successful entrepreneurship schemes and policies in place to help spur entrepreneurship among youth.

"Entrepreneurship gives young people an opportunity to take initiative in creating their own employment, and to define their work so that it matches their own skills and interests," says McMorrow. "Young people aren't flocking to the traditional careers of previous generations – those jobs just don't exist the way they used to. Our report outlines some 'best practice' policies and programs that exist in Canada to support entrepreneurship, but we need to do a better job of coordinating that support, and promoting entrepreneurship as a career choice."

Actions to avoid a lost generation includes an analysis of schemes currently in place across the G20, and 10 key recommendations for countries to help curb youth unemployment and spur economic growth, including:

  1. Create funding mechanisms, either government run or government backed, that make mentorship and financial education a condition of funding.
  2. Create strong relationships, and provide incentives, with venture capitalists, incubators and business angels to develop or create initiatives that enable alternative sources of capital.
  3. Sponsor start-up growth with low-cost funding for targeted groups.
  4. Create a new class of loan for small businesses and young entrepreneurial firms that offer targeted funding to meet expansion capital needs.
  5. Encourage investment in start-ups by offering tax benefits.
  6. Encourage top international talent by changing visa rules and offering funding support.
  7. Simplify and streamline tax administration to ease administrative burdens on young entrepreneurs.
  8. Create a positive narrative around entrepreneurship to help engage young people from an early age.
  9. Encourage and foster hubs, incubators, accelerators and networks to bring relevant talent together.
  10. Create the foundation for a regional entrepreneurial ecosystem to flourish.

"Entrepreneurship can provide a sustainable, fertile source of job creation, drive economic growth and help establish stronger, more prosperous communities," says McMorrow. "But we need to deliberately encourage and inspire that entrepreneurship."

About EY's Strategic Growth Markets Network
EY's worldwide Strategic Growth Markets Network is dedicated to serving the changing needs of rapid-growth companies. For more than 30 years, we've helped many of the world's most dynamic and ambitious companies grow into market leaders. Whether working with international mid-cap companies or early stage venture-backed businesses, our professionals draw upon their extensive experience, insight and global resources to help your business achieve its potential. It's how EY makes a difference.

For more information, please visit ey.com/ca/Entrepreneurs.

EY was recently named 2014 Professional Services Organization of the Year by Startup Canada. The Startup Canada Awards celebrate and distinguish the individuals, communities and institutions in Canada that have demonstrated innovation, excellence, outstanding achievement and impact in advancing Canadian entrepreneurship.

About EY
EY is a global leader in assurance, tax, transaction and advisory services. The insights and quality services we deliver help build trust and confidence in the capital markets and in economies the world over. We develop outstanding leaders who team to deliver on our promises to all of our stakeholders. In so doing, we play a critical role in building a better working world for our people, for our clients and for our communities.

EY is proudly celebrating 150 years in Canada. For more information, please visit ey.com/ca. Follow us on Twitter @EYCanada.

EY refers to the global organization and may refer to one or more of the member firms of Ernst & Young Global Limited, each of which is a separate legal entity. Ernst & Young Global Limited, a UK company limited by guarantee, does not provide services to clients. For more information about our organization, please visit ey.com.

SOURCE EY (Ernst & Young)

For further information: Erika Bennett, erika.bennett@ca.ey.com, 416 943 5497; Sarah Shields, sarah.j.shields@ca.ey.com, 604 648 3607; Julie Fournier, julie.fournier@ca.ey.com, 514 874 4308